For those who think we live in an age of unrestrained violence, think again. At least according to one Harvard psychologist, mankind has learned to rein in its inner demons. But is Pinker’s civilization-as-progress thesis too good to be true?
Jonathan Steinberg’s new biography depicts a Bismarck rife with contradictions. Still, it comes dangerously close to conflating the mad Junker’s cautious conservatism with the führer’s nihilism. There is more to Germany than destiny alone.
We thought the lessons of Vietnam could never be unlearned. But Washington warmongering heeds no warnings, plunging America into the quagmires of Iraq and Afghanistan. The depths of dysfunction behind these decisions seemingly know no bounds.
Enraged bloggers and grandstanding politicians alike denounce the Koran as a glorified terrorist manifesto. Philip Jenkins’s new tome challenges this simplistic logic, analyzing the Bible’s equally—and often shockingly—bloodthirsty passages.
From Carthage to Bosnia, Persia to Palestine, tales of warfare and hubris, excess and murder line the Mediterranean. David Abulafia proffers up a sweeping narrative steeped in culture, commerce and the struggle for dominance on the Great Sea.